At Therman Law Offices, our Schaumburg and Wheaton workers’ compensation attorneys are strong advocates for injured employees. We represent workers across a spectrum of industries who have been impacted by post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and other mental health issues. Illinois law entitles workers to file a claim for benefits and lost wages due to their mental health condition caused by witnessing a traumatic or severe event. If you or someone close to you has endured PTSD in the workplace, we can evaluate your claim and provide practical guidance so that you can understand what is covered by law and how we can help you pursue benefits.Securing Workers’ Compensation Benefits for PTSD Caused by a Workplace Accident
Post-traumatic stress disorder may develop after exposure to an incident, such as a physical attack, assault, catastrophic accident or workplace shooting. For example, after experiencing or witnessing a disaster or the death of a loved one, workers may experience PTSD. This type of mental health issue entitles workers to secure compensation according to Illinois law. The Illinois Workers’ Compensation Act (IWCA) provides a way for workers suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder to receive benefits for medical costs, counseling and psychological treatment.
Illinois law provides that injured workers can obtain benefits for psychological injuries even when the worker was not physically injured. To establish a mental injury claim, employees must show that they endured a sudden, severe emotional shock that can be traced to a specific event or that they developed a mental injury following a series of work-related events. The law requires that mental injuries must be more than daily, typical stress.
As an injury specifically covered by the IWCA, post-traumatic stress disorder is a mental condition. PTSD can stand as its own workers’ compensation claim or an employee may be file for benefits along with a physical injury claim. For example, a worker who has suffered physical harm in a scaffolding accident may also experience lingering PTSD. The claim filed by this worker would include compensation for physical injuries as well as the mental suffering of PTSD.
One requirement to receive workers’ compensation benefits under Illinois law for post-traumatic stress disorder is to prove that the triggering event occurred at work, or during the course and scope of the worker’s employment. The challenge with PTSD is that physicians may have difficulty diagnosing it. Common symptoms include anxiety, sleeplessness and irritability. The physical effects range from fatigue to headaches. A mental health doctor can set forth written medical opinion documenting the symptoms and their impact upon the employee’s ability to perform work-related tasks.
The type of workers’ compensation benefits available to employees suffering PTSD include permanent disability, temporary disability, and partial disability. Depending on how the worker improves following treatment, they may be able to return to work fully or only in a restricted manner. Temporary partial disability (TPD) benefits are appropriate for those employees who return to work but are still recovering from PTSD. Temporary total disability (TTD) is for employees who have received instructions from their physician to remain home.Consult a Schaumburg and Wheaton Lawyer Regarding Your Claim
Post-traumatic stress disorder following a workplace accident often leaves workers unable to meet their occupational and financial obligations. If you or someone close to you suffers from PTSD due to an incident at work, the experienced attorneys of Therman Law Offices can help in preparing and advocating for your workers’ compensation claim. We assist clients throughout Mt. Prospect, Elgin, Streamwood, Hanover Park, Bensenville, Bartlett, as well as Bloomingdale, Wood Dale, Roselle, Glendale Heights, Carol Stream, and Lombard. Our Schaumburg and Wheaton lawyers understand the toll that post-traumatic stress disorder can take. We collaborate with mental health specialists, doctors, and other professionals to present the evidence showing how PTSD has adversely affected you. To set up a free consultation, contact us online or by phone at 312-588-1900.